Saturday, September 5, 2015

Gay Marriage: Aftermath

This is a screenshot from Yahoo, taken today. I don't know about you, but I wouldn't wish lice on anybody....

In the eighteen months since my last post on marriage, the Supreme Court ruled, by a 5-4 margin, that "gay marriage" is protected by the US Constitution. That decision, which up-ends 6000 years of traditional marriage, is putting many Christians in the awkward position of exercising their First Amendment rights to disobey the new "law" (court decisions are not really laws, but that's a topic for another day).

Case in point: Unless you've been living under a rock for the past week, you already know that Kim Davis, a county clerk in Kentucky, has been jailed for refusing a court order to hand out marriage licenses to gay couples. Asserting her strong Christian belief that marriage was instituted by God to be only between a man and a woman, she has refused any and all offers for a compromise. Guessing that a mere fine would not be enough incentive to comply, the judge chided her for not performing her sworn duties as an elected official and sent her to jail, indefinitely.

The White House, lawyers, politicians, and "gay rights" activists have also said that her civic duty trumps her religious beliefs. They claim that no matter what, she must follow and uphold the law of the land and obey her superiors. But if the "I was just following orders" defense doesn't stand up, when it comes to committing atrocities, there must come a point where even this fallen world expects people to stand up against unjust laws and oppressive authorities. In fact, just last year, our country celebrated the 60th anniversary of the start of the Montgomery bus boycott, which started with a solitary, unassuming black woman, named Rosa Parks, who refused to follow the law and cede her seat to a white person.

The trouble is that as long as God is kept out of the limelight, our society has only popular opinion to base its moral code on. And unfortunately, "gay rights" have really picked up steam, over the past 12 years or so, simply because a very vocal minority had the gall to stand up to the status quo. Christians must now learn from those successful tactics and do the same.

When the decision was announced, "gay marriage" supporters, which had been protesting at the courthouse, shouted, "Love won! Love won!" Really? Did love really win? Does love send someone to jail for standing up for their Constitutionally protected rights? Does love rejoice at the suffering of others? Does love file lawsuits when things don't go their way? Does love go against God and His moral compass? People today have forgotten what love really is. They confuse it with lust. They confuse it with tolerance. They confuse it with greed.

Yahoo, Huffington Post, and most media outlets rejoice as well, unmercifully skewering Mrs. Davis for her "bigoted" stance. My son and I recently started reading the Book of Isaiah, for our nightly devotional. A couple nights ago, we read some very a propo verses:

"Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight! ...Which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him!" - Isaiah 5:20, 21, 23

Isaiah was bewailing Israel's fall from God's good graces. Let us pray that we, as children of God and followers of Christ, can help turn this nation around, or at least point the right way to as many of His lost sheep as we can.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Equal Footing: Not A Leg To Stand On

This is the sixth post in a series on marriage.

Let’s leave God, the Bible, and all religion out of the marriage debate for a minute. Let’s assume marriage is only a legal contract, subject solely to civil laws. Does anyone who still opposes “gay marriage” (or any other sort of non-traditional marriage) have any leg to stand on? Ultimately, the answer is no, because without God, there is no source of absolute morality. But then again, the proponents of “gay marriage” have nothing solid on which to base their argument, either. Any logic they try to apply will always be reduced to a subjective opinion, which has no more validity than the opposing opinion.

Let’s look at some things a “gay rights” advocate may say to a supporter of traditional marriage and how they break apart under scrutiny.

“We just want marriage equality.”
“Gay rights” activists are making great progress under the banner of “equality.” But as I’ve already discussed in a previous post, equality is relative, and many would argue that since traditional marriage laws apply to everyone, equality is a moot point. On the flip-side, there is no limit to how far you can take the concept of equality, to the point where marriage itself, in any form, actually produces inequality. If you really think about it, marriage grants married couples additional protections that singles do not have.

“Two people who love each other should be able to marry.”
I keep hearing how “gay marriage” is about allowing all loving couples the same benefits. But the fact is that, legally speaking, marriage has absolutely nothing to do with love, or any real motive for wanting to get married. Is there a law that says that falling in love has to result in marriage? There are many in this world who get married by arrangement or for financial or political reasons. And conversely, there is an ever-growing number of couples that decide to live together, without getting married at all.

“You Christians need to be more tolerant of gays.”
On the surface, “tolerance” implies that we should all try to get along and respect each other’s differing opinions. However, when it comes to people’s rights, tolerance hits a brick wall. Our nation must tread a fine line, to ensure that everyone’s rights are protected, even if their values are diametrically opposed. As I’ve mentioned in earlier posts, many states have now made it illegal to discriminate against homosexuals, but that trounces upon the rights of devout Christians whose consciences prevent them from conducting certain kinds of business with gays. It is now very evident that “gay rights” groups are quite intolerant of those who dare to oppose them. So who gets to decide which group has to be tolerant of the other?

“Don’t fight progress.”
For the first time in our nation’s history, polls indicate that more than half of Americans now support “gay marriage”. So the argument now becomes that we hard-headed Christians should get with the program and fall in line. But this is a stupid argument, because just a few years ago, the pro-gay activists were in the minority. And long before that, sodomy was illegal in many states. Why didn’t the gays get with the program and fall in line, way back then, even though they were the ones in the minority?

So what’s my point? The liberal media, advertisers, corporations, and Hollywood are doing their best to convince us Christians that we are on the wrong side of the debate. But even if there was no God, they would, at best, be on equal footing with us. But there is a God! And there is an absolute standard for right and wrong, well-established in the Bible, God’s inspired Word. So do not be afraid to speak out against the acceptance of the “gay lifestyle”, and to teach your children God’s opinion on the matter.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Civil Rights vs. Moral Character

This is the fifth post in a series on marriage.

“Gay rights” proponents often liken their plight to the Civil Rights Movement of the mid-20th century. It is now almost universally accepted that that was a righteous cause, so naturally, if they can draw enough parallels to it, they will further validate their own cause. But are the two movements based on enough similarities, or is there a fundamental difference that cannot be reconciled?

In his famous 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” As a Christian minister, Dr. King was very well versed in the Bible and the moral principles set forth by God. By this quote, he demonstrates a good understanding of the New Testament teaching that skin color is irrelevant to God, but rather that He places very high importance on a person’s deeds, which are a reflection of their character.

In short, while skin color and other external attributes have no moral aspect, homosexual practices (along with most other things that people can choose to do or not do) have inherent moral implications. Pro-gay groups would like us to believe that sodomy is perfectly morally acceptable, homosexual relationships are totally normal, and anyone who thinks otherwise is a “homophobe” who needs to be rebuked and re-educated.

While many anti-gay sentiments are probably based simply on the “grossness factor” of same-sex intimacy, there are many of us who see it more importantly as an immoral practice that has deep implications upon a person’s character, especially if that person not only doesn’t think there is anything wrong with what they’re doing, but are actively encouraging others to “give it a try.”

For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet... Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.” (Romans 1:26, 27, 32).

This is why we Christians need to continue to stand up against laws that not only sanction immorality, but aim to silence those of us who believe that God is the ultimate Authority on right and wrong.